Impacting My World: Wholeness
Here in Rock Hall, we have tried to stay focused on developing as followers of Jesus as we Gathering to worship; Growing in relationships; and Going to serve.
Growing in our relationships includes growing in our relationship with Jesus. This leads us to develop his character in our lives and understand his calling on our lives. This GROWING happens as we learn more about him and put it into practice.
This is the way that our experience of God's power at work in us, it doesn't stop with us, it makes a difference in the world around us.
This series of talks from City Changers, a ministry who's purpose is to help disciples live out their calling as disciples in such a way that their community is changed. That's our desire here in Rock Hall.
Consider this from Matt 5: 13-16 in the Message paraphrase of the Bible
“Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. “Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
Jer 29:7 NKJV And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the Lord for it; for in its peace you will have peace.
There are many Scripture verses where the ideas of restoring and redeeming or saving the world are emphasized. Throughout the new Testament, restoration, reconciliation and redemption are emphasized. This is God’s purpose and agenda, to make the world a place of ‘Shalom’; meaning completeness, wholeness, health, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony according to the Strong’s concordance,
This is a place of love, forgiveness, justice, security, well-being, a place of blessing, of total salvation. God is manifesting the Kingdom, not only in heaven but right here on earth.
We have the privilege of being invited into this activity that God has initiated to establish his Kingdom. It is therefore not us having to plead with God, to convince him for his Kingdom to be expressed here on earth, but rather us becoming burdened with the conviction of God’s purpose and plan for the time that we are in. It is within that understanding that we pray – “let Your Kingdom come…”
In Doxa Deo we identified that the dimensions of SPIRITUAL, SOCIAL and CULTURE are the areas that we want to trust God for transformation to see His Kingdom come.
On the SPIRITUAL dimension, we endeavor to raise the percentage of people that commit themselves to journey as disciples of Jesus Christ. Every community in the world, no matter how biblically literate they might be, will have lost people.
On the SOCIAL dimension, we reach out to people experiencing breakdown of relationships, primarily within the family structure. So many components of our society affected because of the breakdown of family life. We can relate divorce, homelessness, juvenile delinquency and incarceration, sex trafficking, drug abuse, foster care, poverty, and a plethora of other challenges in society all back to the breakdown of family life.
The area that is often left untouched by the Christian community, is the dimension of CULTURE. Those characteristic features of everyday existence within the difference spheres of our society.
The Kingdom of God wants to affect every sphere of society.
We defined our world as 4 areas of health engaging 8 spheres of society:
Healthy Spirituality – The Church
Healthy Mentality – Education and Media
Healthy Productivity – Business and Government
Healthy Lifestyle – The Arts, Sport and Social Services (these are all the support processes within the city, compassionate engagements, etc )
We are called to consider our role with in society was in this very simple strategy of:
In our journey as City Changers to bring welfare to the city we propose 5 major shifts:
1. Change in the way we think about the GOSPEL
The implications of His finished work are REDEMPTION, RECONCILIATION and RESTORATION. We have a choice whether we approach our lives from Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, or Romans 3:24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus
2. Change in the way we think about our PEOPLE
They do not come to a program – they are the program
Onboarding – not members / partners of a dream – CITY CHANGER
Equipping of vs Ministering to
From encouraging the saints to attend the service to equipping the saints for works of service.
“[Ministers are] to prepare [God’s] people for works of service”
3. Change in the way we think about CHURCH
From measuring size to measuring impact.
“‘The kingdom of heaven is like yeast…mixed into…flour until it [has been] worked all through the dough’” (Matthew 13:33 NIV).
The question, “How big is your church?” should be replaced with, “What impact and influence does your church have in your community?”
4. Change in the way we consider OTHER CHURCHES
Move from our ego-systems into a Kingdom eco-system
We need to Connect / Collaborate / Celebrate
From positioning ourselves against other ministries to joining hands to make a difference for the Kingdom.
“Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, HCSB).
5. Change the way we think about engaging THE CITY
From condemning your city to blessing your city.
“Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper” (Jeremiah 29:7, NIV).
From building walls to building bridges.
“‘You are the salt of the earth…You are the light of the world’”
(Matthew 5:13a,14a, NIV).
From being a minister in a local congregation to being a spiritual leader in a geographical region.
“As [Jesus] approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it”
(Luke 19:41, NIV).
From thinking of shared activity to shared outcomes.
“I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain” (John 15:16b)
When we start thinking of outcomes, we define what we want to change and then align all our activities to serve that particular goal, which can be measured and evaluated.
Framework: SPIRITUAL – lostness / SOCIAL – pain / CULTURAL – brokenness